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HomeSportsLeonard Fournette’s block on Micah Parsons ignited a debate over NFL rules...

Leonard Fournette’s block on Micah Parsons ignited a debate over NFL rules and safety

Heading into their recreation in opposition to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night time, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and their offensive teaching employees knew they wanted a plan for the proficient Micah Parsons. Final season’s Defensive Rookie of the Yr is a drive on the linebacker place each in protection and as a cross rusher, and Tampa Bay knew they needed to account for him each time he got here after quarterback Tom Brady.

One such play from that recreation touched off a disagreement on-line, and a debate over how the NFL views participant security in terms of defensive gamers.

Late within the first half, Brady linked with veteran Julio Jones on a deep cross alongside the appropriate facet of the sector. But it surely was not the completion that drew probably the most consideration, however quite the chip block from Leonard Fournette on Parsons as he rushed off the left edge:

Parsons rushes off the left edge, working in opposition to reserve left deal with Josh Wells. Wells was within the recreation after beginning deal with Donovan Smith left as a result of an elbow damage. With Parsons working in opposition to a backup, the Buccaneers determine to provide Wells assist, within the type of Fournette chipping on Parsons. The chip block caught the eye of the Twitter timeline, after which Parsons after the sport, who used some … colourful language in response:

The clip additionally drew the eye of cross rusher Von Miller, who made the case that it was a harmful block that lets “the offense tee off on our marquee cross rushers:”

There are guidelines in place the place the league protects defenders from chop blocks, the place an offensive participant goes low right into a defender whereas the defender is already engaged with one other blocker above the waist. In keeping with the NFL’s rulebook, all such blocks are unlawful, except the contact is initiated above the waist, or if the contact is “incidental.” On this play, nonetheless, Fournette stays above the waist.

Nonetheless, Parsons and Miller make the case that with the defender engaged, and his eyes within the backfield, this type of block is harmful and dangers the “future” of the league. Miller, like many defensive gamers, factors out that whereas the NFL all the time appears to be like for tactics to guard offensive gamers — particularly quarterbacks — it isn’t typically the case that defensive gamers obtain the identical safety.

Ought to such a rule change be coming? As a washed-up former quarterback a number of months older than Brady, I’m of the thoughts that something that may be accomplished throughout the present guidelines to sluggish these guys down off the sting, together with authorized chip blocks like this one from Fournette, are a great factor. Maybe my expensive buddies on the defensive facet of the soccer could disagree.

As for Fournette himself, he was not silent in regards to the play on social media, responding with a easy GIF:



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